By A.Sherrod Blakely
BOSTON When you think about current Boston Celtics players who can knock down shots, there are a bunch of names that immediately come to mind.
Chances are, Kendrick Perkins isn't one of them.
And yet the 6-foot-10 center is not only tops on the C's in shooting percentage this season, but he also stands as the franchise leader in that category.
"I know I'm not going to get a ton of shots up," Perkins recently told CSNNE.com. "I know that. So I know when I get them, I gotta make them count."
More often than not, he does.
A career 56.4 percent shooter, Perkins is connecting on 58 percent of his shots this season.
Of course, most of Perkins' points come around the basket.
While recovering from a torn MCL and PCL injury suffered in Game Six of the NBA Finals last June, Perkins said he went about trying to improve his game in all phases -- including shooting.
"That's never going to be a big part of my game, scoring," Perkins said. "But I've been working on this little 15-footer; just trying to get better, that's all."
Even though he's the franchise leader in field-goal percentage, arguably Perkins' greatest contributions to the Celtics' success come at the defensive end of the floor.
"Him and KG, those guys are our defensive anchors," Boston's Glen Davis told CSNNE.com.
But there are times when the Celtics call upon Perkins to be more of an impact player on offense.
Boston certainly needed a big game offensively from Perkins in Sunday's 85-82 win over the Miami Heat.
With a roster that was as depleted as we've seen this season against the Heat, Perkins tallied a season-high 15 points in the C's victory.
"We told Perk that he had to be a great rover and finisher against the Heat," said Celtics coach Doc Rivers. "Because they do a great job of showing with their bigs. I told him, 'just trust the pass. it will be there.'"
Trust has been something Perkins' teammates have placed in him, both as a defender and at times, as a scorer, too.
"He has great hands. He can finish around the basket," said Kevin Garnett. "Defensively, he doesn't need a lot of help. He's a talker. We have that chemistry and rapport with him. To have him back to be a force . . . it's good to have Perk back."